Weekly Newsletter: Retirement is Not in the Bible

by | Jun 21, 2022 | Articles, Faith and Work, Resources

My friend Chuck has always been an encouragement to me. (Read his first article on retirement here.) A few years ago he retired from his 40+ year corporate career. A short time later, he started volunteering with One Mission Society, a 100-year-old missions organization based on the south side of Indianapolis. That “volunteer” role kept expanding and eventually turned into a “retirement career” of sorts. Now in his late 60s, Chuck oversees church planting efforts in Africa for OMS, going back and forth to the continent 3-4 times per year.

Chuck once pointed out to me, “There’s no mention of any biblical character quitting his fishing or farming job and heading off to Dead Sea Beach or sailing off to some distant island with no God-inspired purpose in mind.”

He’s right. There really is no mention of our modern Western definition of retirement anywhere in Scripture. The closest we can come is the Levites who served in the temple until age fifty. But even then, the Bible tells us they continued to “stand guard” and mentor the younger Levites who shouldered the full load.

My 78 year old father continues to come into the office, adding his wisdom and covering and accounting skills to the work we do. My 98 year old former pastor still writes sermons and takes time to encourage and strategize with missionaries!

I’m certainly not suggesting you should continue the grind of an 8-5 career until your dying breath. Not at all! But I am saying that we were created to “work and keep” God’s creation, to add value to the world and the people around us until Jesus calls us home. There is no expiration date on the Great Commandment and the Great Commission.

This week on the podcast we talk about God’s created order and the relationship between work and rest. We also talk about this idea of biblical retirement and what it looks like to retire from our jobs without retiring from the Kingdom. We even have a great interview with my friend Chuck about his personal journey that I know will encourage you, no matter what season of life you are in.

We’d love for you to take a listen, subscribe, like, and rate the podcast. It’s a huge help to us! The Missional Marketplace Podcast is available on AppleSpotifyYouTubeAnchor, and most other podcast platforms!


PODCASTRetirement Is Not In The Bible
ARTICLEWorkism v. Rest

Accelerating the Great Commission through the Marketplace,

Erik Cooper | The Stone Table

For more articles on retirement:

AVAILABLE NOW! The Missional Marketplace PodcastAvailable on AppleSpotifyYouTube, and most other podcast platforms!

Don’t forget to pick up your copy of Missional Marketplace: Finding Your Everyday Work in God’s Eternal Plan in your choice of print, e-book, or audiobook by clicking here!

Erik Cooper

After starting his career in the business world, Erik spent 12 years in full-time ministry, both on staff at a large suburban church and as a church planter in a downtown urban context. In addition to his role at The Stone Table, he also serves as the Vice President of Community Reinvestment Foundation, a nonprofit real estate company that provides high-quality affordable housing all over Indiana while investing its profits into missions through The Stone Table.

The Stone Table Exists to Mobilize Marketplace Believers for The Great Commission.


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